The Honjin Murders by Seishi Yokomizo

The Honjin Murders

Seishi Yokomizo

One to get the little grey cells working. First published in 1973 but not published in English until 2019 - this book is set in traditional hierarchical Japan in 1937. A gruesome double murder, a large cast of suspects, an eccentric amateur detective and a classic 'locked room' mystery - what more can you ask for? Elegant writing style - very intriguing and can be read at one sitting. Hopefully there will be more translations of Yokomizo’s work.


To me, the most captivating element of this case was the way in which the traditional Japanese instrument known as the koto was connected from beginning to end. At all the critical moments, it’s eerie music could be heard. I, who have never quite escaped the influences of romanticism, still find that incredibly alluring.

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